“The employee advocacy definition is quite simple: it is the promotion of your company by the people who work for it… Employee advocacy as a marketing tactic is a strategic, sustainable program to encourage employees to share brand values and messages in an organic way.”LinkedIn
Employee advocacy is an important part of any communications plan. Whether you’re focused on recruiting top talent or growing your social media following, your employees are some of your best existing marketing assets.
Employees are your most authentic voices
One of the biggest challenges for any organization is creating authentic, quality social media content. You know the kind – posts that sound honest and believable but simultaneously tout how great you are. So how do you create this ideal content? Ask someone who believes in your organization. Better yet, be so great that your team can’t help but share the love.
Mutually beneficial employee advocacy programs
A common employee advocacy program is a job candidate referral program. Why these programs work is that both employee and employer get something out of the deal. They can also be fairly straightforward to execute and track especially for smaller organizations.
Tools for building employee advocacy programs
There are several existing tools that help you create employee advocacy programs. However, for smaller organizations, you can always keep your program simple and manageable without an external application or tool. Employee advocacy programs should be a cross-functional activity between HR and Marketing / PR. Note, every level of employee from entry-level to C-Suite can be included.
Tips for any employee advocacy program
- Dedicate resources to developing and managing the program for maximum success – whether your goal is finding talent or growing awareness.
- Share examples of content for your employees to post but allow for personalization and customization so the content feels authentic.
- Provide guardrails on what should and should not be shared – a subset of messaging and visual identity guidelines.